Those who live and work on the Drive will be happy to know that a well-loved Vancouver coffee shop will soon call the neighbourhood its new home.
Best known for its mouthwatering cinnamon buns (which may or may not have reached cult-status) that are freshly baked each morning, the founder and owner of the long-time establishment, Dan Hilton, is excited to move into the new space.
“We have been looking [at locations] for a while,” Hilton told the Straight in a phone interview. “This is a great space. You’ve got windows in the front and back, beautiful trees in front of us, and light coming in everywhere.”
Grounds for Coffee’s new digs covers 1,800-square-feet, and can accommodate 42 guests. Its interior design will be different than its original counterpart, but will still evoke a warm and welcoming atmosphere with natural elements like stone, wood, and steel.
“There’s going to be a lot of reclaimed fir, steel, galvanized pipes, [and] a lot of white, open spaces,” explained Hilton. “It’s a large area with a polished concrete floor, and lots of plug-ins and free wifi.”
A community workspace, communal benches, and standalone tables at this coffee shop will make it accessible to those who plan to stay a little longer to work or study. When the weather warms up, we don’t doubt its exterior patio seating will be consistently filled up.
As for the menu, guests can expect to find plenty of cinnamon buns and other items that can be found at its sister location. Savoury breakfast and lunch bites will be served, such as sandwiches, grilled cheeses, calzones, wraps, and salads.
But the owner kept it real by emphasizing that its sweets are usually more popular than the savoury offerings, “When it’s salads versus cinnamon buns, the salads don’t stand a chance.”
Since Grounds for Coffee’s soon-to-open location is so much larger than the original, its team will have more room to explore other offerings. “We’ll be introducing some nitrogen cold brew, and other cold-brew options,” said Hilton. “We’ll be in a position to do a little more personalized coffee services like French press.”
Recently, Hilton has switched his Alma Street coffee spot to become cashless, and will do the same for the Drive location.
“Cashless is safer for customers, employees, [and] it’s cleaner if you think about how filthy it is,” added Hilton. “You don’t want it in your food. You’re eating with your fingers a lot of the time. If you think about it, it’s a lot more environmentally friendly too.”
A Grounds for Coffee app is also in the works, which will be ready in a few months. Customers will be able to order and pay ahead of time on their smartphones, and will also be able to join a loyalty program.
There’s definitely a lot of emphasis on progressive customer service that includes having a seamless coffee-shop experience.
“One of the reasons Grounds for Coffee is excited to be coming to the Drive is because there are so many amazing cafes, and to be a part of that is a real privilege,” said Hilton. “It’s really nice to be able to complement that existing variety of the Drive, because I think that’s getting harder and harder to do. Grounds is actually in a position to provide something unique and delicious and fun.”